Sure, flowers are nice, but nothing tells Mom you love her like a four-pack of Tile locators and a Google Home Mini.


Mother’s Day is just around the corner here in the US — Sunday, May 12, to be exact — so it’s time to start giving some serious thought to gift ideas.

In an ideal world, money would be no object — because, you know, it’s Mom! But as much as we’d all love to give her a week at Club Med, the gift budget can stretch only so far.

Fortunately, I’ve got some great gifts picked out, all of them on sale, some of them Cheapskate exclusives. Because, after all, you can’t buy Mom’s love, but you can save money on it. 😜

Disclaimer: CNET may get a share of revenue from the sale of the products featured on this page.

Save 25-30% on Nixplay digital photo frames

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You know all those treasured photos trapped on Mom’s phone? Give her a place to show them off, along with new photos sent by friends and family. That’s the beauty of a digital photo frame, which I rank among the all-time best Mother’s Day gifts you can give.

For CNET readers only, Nixplay is offering 25% off the Nixplay Seed Ultra 10-inch and Nixplay Seed 13.3-inch with promo code CNETMOMS25.

You can also get 30% off the Nixplay Seed 10.1 (black or wood-effect frame) with promo code CNETMOMS30. The black one works out to be your best overall deal, with a final price of $105.

See at Nixplay

Instant Pot LUX60 V3 6-quart 6-in-1 Pressure Cooker: $59 (save $40)

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Tyler Lizenby/CNET

Let’s be honest, handing Mom a gift that says “this will help you with the housework!” just isn’t cool. But this particular item is a major exception to the rule: It’s the must-have kitchen appliance, and has been for the last few years’ worth of holidays.

See at Walmart

Apple Watch Series 3: $199 (save $80)

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Screenshot by Sean Hollister/CNET

At $199, the Apple Watch Series 3 still isn’t what I’d call cheap — but it’s $80 off the regular price and without question the best iPhone-compatible smartwatch.

The white sport-band goes with everything, but you can make this gift even more fun with some colorful replacements, like this three-pack for $14. While you’re at it, look at all the other inexpensive Apple Watch accessories you can get.

See at Walmart

Read full review

AirPod alternative: The BlitzWolf BW-FYE1 wireless earbuds for $33 (save $17)

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When you apply promo code CNETBWFYE1 at checkout, you’ll get an exclusive deal on one of my favorite AirPod alternatives.

The BW-FYE1 features a compact charging case, autopairing the moment you open that case and a comfy stay-put fit. I find the sound quality to be quite good overall, though a bit lacking in bass because these don’t really seal inside the ear (same as AirPods). But for Mom, simplicity and comfort are key, right? These deliver.

See at Amazon

Facebook Portal: $99 (save $100)

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Don’t just call Mom to say hi — video-call her! It’s the 21st century, after all.

That option has rarely been cheaper now that the Facebook Portal is on sale for $99. It’s not only a dedicated video-call machine, but also a voice-powered smart assistant, able to play music, show videos, even run a slideshow of family photos. Even if you don’t have a Portal of your own, you can call Mom (and vice versa) via Facebook Messenger.

By the way, if you’re interested in getting both a Portal and a Portal Plus, you can save $200 if you purchase from Facebook proper.

See at Amazon

Read full review

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Tile Mate 4-pack and free Google Home Mini: $60 (save $49)

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I don’t know about the moms in your life, but the ones I know are always misplacing their phones. That’s why I think the Tile makes a fantastic gift: Double-press the button and it makes the phone ring, even if it’s set to silent. It works the other way, too: Lost keys? Open the Tile app and make the tile itself ring.

The four-pack is already a pretty good deal at $60, but the free Google Home Mini is icing on the cake. You can add that to the gift pile, gift it to some else (a dad or grad, perhaps?) or even just keep it for yourself. We won’t tell. This offer is good until April 27.

See at Target

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UE Wonderboom mini Bluetooth speaker: $43 (save $37)

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Sarah Tew/CNET

The Wonderboom is compact, fully waterproof speaker that plays very loud for its size, with a good amount of bass. It also floats in water and has decent battery life. CNET readers can get it for just $42.99 with promo code CNETBOOM, applied at checkout.

Just one thing to note: Although it’s new, and available in your choice of colors, it ships in brown-box, rather than retail, packaging.

See at Daily Steals

Read full review

Originally published May 1, 2018.
Updates, April 23, 2019: Updated for 2019 with new deals; April 25: Added Instant Pot; April 26: Removed Ancestry (expired), added Nixplay.

CNET’s Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on PCs, phones, gadgets and much more. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our FAQ page. Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and follow the Cheapskate on Facebook and Twitter!